The Italian giant is technically not coming out with a new electric car this year – the standard MC20 is a preview of the electric model that will be introduced in the near future. In the meantime, Maserati is also introducing a new engine, a twin-turbocharged 630-hp V6. It’s the first mid-engine car Maserati has done since the early ’70s, and it’s got other features guaranteed to get attention.
It boasts a sportscar feel but also errands-running comfort, thanks in large part to aluminum subframes for suspension and powertrain on an otherwise carbon-fiber structure. The design, done with automotive engineering group and racecar builder Dallara, also minimizes weight. With two driving modes, the car can have both a daily-driver feel and proper racecar excitement.
Called “the supercar that will revive Maserati” by Autoweek, it features plenty of luxury beyond the hot engine. The entirely digitized infotainment system and instrument cluster provides a wow factor. This is also the first Maserati ever to have butterfly doors.
Every car manufacturer seems to now be coming out with new electric and hybrid cars, and Ferrari had a real “Hold my Peroni” moment when it decided to compete in that market. The SF90 is a hybrid – and also Ferrari’s fastest-ever street car.
Granted, it’s not the most practical hybrid out there; you can run for less than 16 miles on electric alone. The rest of the time you’re running with a twin-turbo, 769-horsepower V8 that works in concert with three electric motors that add another 217 hp to create a car that does 0 to 60 in 2.3 seconds. That’s the hardware that gives it that fastest-ever title; the car broke a record with its 79-second lap around Italy’s famed Fiorano circuit.
A switch allows you to move between four driving modes: the aforementioned EV Only, sensible-for-a-Ferrari Hybrid, Performance and – possibly be prepared to meet some of your local law enforcement community if you try this one too much – Qualify. The twin-turbo V8 also shuts down automatically when the car is in reverse – and if you wish it didn’t, you should frankly reconsider some of your driving choices.
As with many electric or hybrid cars, the interior is sleek and clean. A dramatic LCD monitor is a highlight, and there’s a voice-activated navigation system.
Tesla S Plaid
Plaid is the new fad – at least when it comes to cars – and you’re about to find out why. Let’s start with the basics. The Tesla S Plaid has a horsepower of 1020 and torque of 1050 lb ft, reaching a top speed of 200 mph (with 21″ wheel/tire package coming soon). We have to mention the very cool tri-motor powertrain consisting of three electric motors.
So what makes this car the talk of the auto industry? Well, there’s the fact that it zips from 0 to 60 mph in a staggering 1.99 seconds, making it the quickest production car on the market and on the planet (as of July 2021). The insane acceleration of the car even has Jay Leno talking; he recently told Spike’s Car Radio that, in the Plaid, he posted a 9.247-second quarter mile at 152 mph.
Then there’s the redesigned interior with yoke steering wheel and the 17″ cinematic landscape-oriented infotainment display. If you’re a gamer, you’re going to like these features. The yoke steering wheel feels much like a video game controller, and, with up to 10 teraflops of processing power, the vehicle’s in-car gaming is on-par with the latest consoles.
Another cool feature is its three driving modes: Chill, Sport and Plaid. What’s “Plaid mode?” We’re glad you asked. It consists of a drag strip mode with launch control where the nose drops and gets into a “cheetah stance.”
The California-based automaker also introduces some full self-driving capabilities with the Plaid. It can navigate on autopilot (active guidance from on-ramp to off-ramp), auto lane change (while driving on the highway), summon (automatically retire your car) and auto park (parallel and perpendicular parking with a single touch).
Aston Martin DBX
Aston Martin makes cars that can do many things, but they’ve never exactly been the go-to tow-your-boat automaker.
Now though, the ultra-luxury British carmaker is getting into the SUV game – and of course, they’re doing it in true Aston Martin style.
Previous iterations of the DBX had already gone into crossover territory, but in 2022 they’re offering a full SUV. There’s 542hp from a twin-turbo V8 and, this being Aston, there’s all sorts of luxury in the cabin.
One big change is that you can now get the DBX with 23-inch wheels, 22 being the previous biggest. The carmaker’s famously precise customization service also means you can get it with any number of details and features; broadly speaking, they offer four interior options: Accelerate, Impulse, Create and Inspire. You can have a play on configurator.astonmartin.com to get a full idea of how detailed they get; a couple of our favorite options include the hot-sounding Sport Exhaust System and the Event Package, which essentially makes the back of the SUV into a high-end picnic spot complete with blanket, hamper and event seating.
GMC Hummer EV
Once brought from military to civilian life as the ultimate luxury gas guzzler, the Hummer is making a comeback. An all-electric comeback.
The pickup truck version of the Hummer EV comes out in 2022, with an SUV version due in 2024. Features on the new Hummer? Oh, buckle in for this one.
From a driving perspective, let’s start with Watts to Freedom, or WTF mode. Activate it and you can make the 9,000-pound vehicle go from 0 to 60 in three seconds. Doesn’t exactly do wonders for its range, but it’s pretty cool now and then. However, it does have a horsepower of 1,000. In addition to going real fast, it can also go, erm, sideways. It’s tough to describe CrabWalk other than to say it’s pretty much what it sounds like. At low speeds, the rear wheels turn the same way the front wheels do, allowing for diagonal movement in situations where a three-point turn with the great beast might not be the most fun thing to do.
The Infinity Roof, meanwhile, isn’t quite as advanced – this is basically the EPCOT version of T-tops. But there aren’t many convertible trucks on the market, so there you go. Meanwhile, what they market as Ultravision is definitely that, with as many as 18 cameras giving you a look at wherever the chonky vehicle is going.
For all its size, it’s not what you’d call a full-sized pickup; the bed is only five feet. But this luxury truck might not be destined for the construction site anyway.